George Takei picture book on his years in internment camps will be published next spring

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This cover image released by Crown Books for Young Readers shows "My Lost Freedom: A Japanese American World War II Story" by George Takei, releasing April 30. (Crown Books for Young Readers via AP)

NEW YORK – “Star Trek” actor and political activist George Takei has a picture book scheduled for next spring that draws upon his early childhood years spent in internment camps for Japanese Americans.

Crown Books for Young Readers announced Wednesday that Takei's “My Lost Freedom,” illustrated by Michelle Lee, will be published April 30, 2024. Takei, 86, spent three years in three different camps during World War II. The camps were established after President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed an executive order in 1942 authorizing the forced removal on the West Coast of those considered security risks, leading to the incarceration of more than 100,000 Japanese Americans.

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“My childhood behind barbed wire fences is the reason I became an activist,” Takei said in a statement. "It was clear that the story about the injustices Japanese Americans faced should also be told in a way that young children and their caregivers could understand. Especially in today’s political climate, my mission is to convey this chapter of American history to children so that we can all grow up knowing both the fragility and the importance of democracy and our participation in it.”

Takei's previous books include “Oh Myyy!: There Goes The Internet,” about his substantial social media following, and the autobiography “To the Stars.”

Crown Books for Young Readers is an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.

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